Maracci held that Mohammed and Mohammedanism were not very dissimilar to Luther and Protestantism.
Spanheim and D'Herbelot characterize him as a "wicked impostor", and a "dastardly liar", while Prideaux stamps him as a wilful deceiver. Modern scholars, such as Sprenger, Noldeke, Weil, Muir, Koelle, Grimme, Margoliouth, give us a more correct and unbiased estimate of Mohammed's life and character, and substantially agree as to his motives, prophetic call, personal qualifications, and sincerity.
He was affectionate and magnanimous, pious and austere in the practice of his religion, brave, zealous, and above reproach in his personal and family conduct.
By his preaching and his attack on heathenism, Mohammed provoked persecution which drove him from Mecca to Medina in 622, the year of the Hejira (Flight) and the beginning of the Mohammedan Era.
At Medina he was recognized as the prophet of God, and his followers increased.
After this, it is hardly necessary to say that, in Zwemer's opinion, Mohammed fell very far short of the most elementary requirements of Scriptural morality. And the followers of the prophet can scarcely complain if, even on such evidence, the verdict of history goes against him".
Quoting Johnstone, Zwemer concludes by remarking that the judgment of these modern scholars, however harsh, rests on evidence which "comes all from the lips and the pens of his own devoted adherents. After Mohammed's death Mohammedanism aspired to become a world power and a universal religion.
On his commercial journeys to Syria and Palestine he became acquainted with Jews and Christians, and acquired an imperfect knowledge of their religion and traditions. 612), he claimed to have received a call from the Angel Gabriel, and thus began his active career as the prophet of Allah and the apostle of Arabia.
He was a man of retiring disposition, addicted to prayer and fasting, and was subject to epileptic fits. His converts were about forty in all, including his wife, his daughter, his father-in-law Abu Bakr, his adopted son Ali Omar, and his slave Zayd.
He took the field against his enemies, conquered several Arabian, Jewish, and Christian tribes, entered Mecca in triumph in 630, demolished the idols of the Kaaba, became master of Arabia, and finally united all the tribes under one emblem and one religion.
In 632 he made his last pilgrimage to Mecca at the head of forty thousand followers, and soon after his return died of a violent fever in the sixty-third year of his age, the eleventh of the Hejira, and the year 633 of the Christian era.
Many of these opinions are biased either by an extreme hatred of Islam and its founder or by an exaggerated admiration, coupled with a hatred of Christianity.